Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Why I don't write about politics

I usually agree with Winston Churchill in that our own form of government is the worst one except for all the others.

But this morning, I want to be Ukrainian.

Whether you're a devoted student of politics or regard it as just another machine to rage against, you really have to love today's news out of the Ukraine. In the photo above, distinguishable from the Stanley Cup playoffs only by the choice of uniform, marginally advanced age and dramatically lower level of press coverage, the Ukrainian parliament is discussing the ratification of a Crimean seaport. According to the Associated Press report, "eggs and smoke bombs" were also thrown along with all those punches. Eggs and smoke bombs! Meaning these lawmakers came to work expecting exactly this style of problem-solving format.

Don't worry. I'll never become one of those bloggers who write mostly about government. For one, I don't have a law degree, political experience or a terribly high IQ, not that any of that has hindered most of the other people doing it. But rather, because if I can't solve the problem, I at least don't want to contribute to it.

Which is why I'm writing about it today. Because, whatever the downside of government by food fight -- cleanup issues, waste issues, dignity issues -- at least those Ukrainian lawmakers are taking matters into their own hands. I'm not seeing any government by lobbyist proxy, any special-interest-press-releases-as-speeches, any persuasion by viral video, any -- finally getting to my point -- my-blogger-can-beat-up-your-blogger deferral of dirty work.

No one expects a pretty government, but a passive-aggressive one is a truly ugly thing to behold.

And that's why I'm now a fan of the Ukrainian parliament. They solve their problems themselves. They don't govern the 21st Century American way. They throw eggs and smoke bombs and sucker punches.

They are much, much more dignified.


La Professora said...

Now you know why I enjoy teaching Comparative Politics. This type of parliamentary fight is not as rare as you might think. South Korea alone is good for at least <a href=">one good brawl</a> a year.

Jacob said...

To add to the culinary view on politics, which seems to also be a very insightful view, Otto von Bismarck said, "Laws are like sausages, it is better not to see them being made."

Elaine said...

Interesting post and sounds like a hell of a day in Kyiv. Some of the videos floating around on YouTube are pretty wild. Ukraine is quite a place. When I was living there in 2000 they were debating similar issues with lots of the same people in positions of power- Yulia Timoshenko most recognizably. Corruption is rife at all levels of government (hell, even just in a school's administration it was all too easy to find examples of problematic dealings), but you're right, they are debating (manhandling?) real issues, though I wonder whether they are achieving any real results? At least they are passionate about the issue and not just fighting to be partisan!